Work and work again… Is there time for something else?

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Last Updated on February 10, 2019 by Lucie Klabanová

The topic of work versus private life is on my list for blog posts since the beginning. And suddenly, I do not feel like starting it. Maybe the topic is more psychological than managerial.

So, let’s not start with explaining some scientific terms like work-life balance. You can get that in books. I will rather try to show you a personal point of view about this.

The truth is as follows: we usually have more work than we can manage. This is fact. I do remember my first job where my feeling for responsibility was pushing me to work “to the tearing of the body”, just to have everything done. And it never was. I did not see the light at the end of the tunnel.

And then, my boss told me: “Learn to live with the fact, you will never have everything finished.”  Easy, but important advice. This was the first step towards understanding the importance of priority setting.

Of course, I did not leave the office the next day at the minute of finish of working hours. But I learned not to take it personally, when something needed to wait. I learned to say NO even to myself.

Let’s think first about what is actually a job? Probably, we can say it is something what we do to earn money for living. Right, I will admit it – it is not my case. I tried several well-paid positions, which were “just to be there”. For me that did not work. I was getting crazy. Someone might tell you that it is OK, even if he does not like the job, it is well-rewarded, so why to do something about it.

And I think this is a mistake in balancing the work and life. To spend many years, 8 hours per day (and more), where we do not like it, staying there only because we receive money to our bank account every month, is at least sad. (Sure, there are some life situation where it might be necessary for living reasons, but I do not want to speak about them now.) And openly, are you really fully concentrated full 8 hours at work where you do not like it? Or do you rather “sit in the office” only?

In my opinion, each hour, each minute, that we spend at work which we do not enjoy, is unpayable. Work is, in the world we live in, part of our lives.

It is not work AND life. It is our lives and part of it is our work, as well as our family, hobbies, free time. And if it is so, how could we possible spent such a big part of our lives somewhere where we do not like to be?

On the other hand, let’s be pragmatic – in every job there are never only the good and positive things. There is always a part we do not like. I consider it rather that we can be satisfied there, where we see the value of our work, we are happy about what we do.

Do you think those are just psychological words? Well, not for me.

I have several experiences from “low valued” positions. I worked in the factory on the line. And yes, I was happy there because at the end of the line there was this beautiful, polished new car, that will make its new owner happy. I worked as a housekeeper in a hotel. And yes, I enjoyed it because after I left the room, the work I had done was visible and the visitor entered into cozy room. Today I work as manager and I am so happy when I see how my team is satisfied and bringing results as well as plenty of great ideas. 

Find your own key

Each of us is different. Each of us finds interest or importance in different things. Please, find your key to satisfactory job. It is not easy, but if you do, it will change your life. And certainly not only the life at work.

All I do for work is part of my life. I plan my priorities at work, together the working with the private ones. They have the same importance. I do not need to think about the fact, that sometimes I sit at work until late night, because I do it when that is my priority. On the other hand, I do need to feel sorry if I have to ask my boss for half a day off to be able to arrange some private things.

You might claim that you want to follow your dream in terms of job, but you do not manage to earn your living by that. I do not believe it. Maybe not now. Maybe you will need to cut your expenses. Maybe you will need to work much harder. But if it is what you really want to do, it is your passion, you give everything into it, the fruit will come.

Of course, please be realistic. To become American president when you even can’t speak English is not the right dream. :-)

It will neither happen overnight, nor without you working hard. It will not be easy. You will be about to give up many times. You will run into plenty roadblocks. You will be tested if you really mean it.

But if you keep on going, keep repeating what is your target, you will not regret in the end.

Work-life-balance will stay just an empty useless term.

Your work will be your life. Your life will be also at work.

I am a mentor, leader and pioneer of business process improvement. I help companies and individuals to find effective ways to achieve their goals. More about me you can find here>>

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